Telemedicine Helps Doctors Treat Rural Patients in Ellis County

During a stroke, every second counts, and now stroke patients in rural parts of North Texas are getting life-saving care quicker than ever before thanks to new technology.

Inside a treatment room at Baylor Scott and White Waxahachie the attending phsycian isn't who – or what – you'd expect.

It's a robot.

But on the screen of the robot appears a neurologist out of Dallas, who's able to assess potential stroke patients.

It's the latest advancement at the Ellis Couny hospital, where they see 20 to 25 patients who present stroke symptoms a month.

"Our hospital doesn't have a neurologist on all the time. The only way we have access to a neurologist is through telemedicine," said Rachel Matthews, professional development educator in the emergency department.

Every minute during a stroke, 1.9 million brain cells die.

Time is of the essence.

"So we got this robot, and what this allows us to do is one-on-one beside assessments with a neurologist," Matthews said. "Time is brain, and we want you to come to the nearest facility so we can take care of you."

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